Spain Country Drug Report 2019

Drug-induced deaths

Drug-induced deaths are deaths that can be attributed directly to the use of illicit drugs (i.e. poisonings and overdoses).

The 2016 data extracted from the General Mortality Register showed an increase in the number of drug-induced deaths, reaching the highest level since 2008. According to the available toxicological results, in 9 out of 10 cases, the presence of more than one psychoactive substance was detected, which indicates that polydrug use remains common in Spain. The drugs most commonly implicated in drug-induced deaths were opioids, followed by cocaine.

The drug-induced mortality rate among adults (aged 15-64 years) was 16 deaths per million in 2016.

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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.